Updated: 11/29/23 at 9:57am PST
Finding Calm Amidst Chaos
Something I am now doing in my personal and professional life is not rushing to react to everything that is happening around me. It is a challenge given the urgency dictated by the destructive culture we exist in today. I am acknowledging my privilege in taking time to observe and learn more about the history and interconnectedness of the atrocities that have occurred and are occurring now. Striving to minimize harm through my words, while also offering support and comfort, is an uphill battle. Especially in a society hungry for quick, often empty responses that show little commitment to real change.
This Post is for the PEOPLE
This isn’t for political pundits. This post is for anyone who has cried over people being killed for how they show up in this society. This post is to those whose spirits are worn out by learning of yet another group of humans were used in place of paper shooting targets. To those people who are feeling less and less like people and more like characters in a cruel, grotesque and never-ending video game:
Your Humanity is not up for debate. Full stop.
A Glimpse of Past Reflections
In my post titled Justice First, I expressed the following sentiment:
“Recapping everything that has occurred since my last post seems futile. It almost feels as if the character Thanos from the Avengers: [End Game] is snapping his fingers, however his fingers are wet so he just keeps snapping because he’s not getting the full effect. We’re not seeing a loss of half of humanity. Yet, with every inaudible snap there is more loss and more injustice to dismantle.”
I previously mentioned in an April 18, 2021 post, after the tragic deaths of Daunte Wright and Adam Toledo, the mounting difficulty in finding uplifting words for the next generation of leaders.
Fast forward to October 14, 2023, where tragedy struck again with the heartbreaking news of the vicious stabbing of 6-year-old Palestinian child, Wadea Al-Fayoume and his mother, Hanan Shaheen. Wadea was killed, his mother “survived.”
As an educator, crafting an inspiring message for our future leaders remains a challenge.
But I am human and I am capable of doing hard things, so let’s go…
Remember Their Names
Wadea Al-Fayoume, Tricia Asselin, Steve Vozzella, Peyton Brewer-Ross, Arthur Strout, Ron Morin, Joshua Seal, Joseph Walker, and Maxx Hathaway. Never forgetting Breonna Taylor, Atatiana Jefferson, George Floyd #TooManytoList and the imperative that #BlackLivesMatter.
We have been afforded another day and can still say their names.
Voices from Lands in Turmoil
#SpeakToTheLand: From the Gaza Strip to Lewiston, Maine, it’s vital to remember that at the core of each crisis, there are people. No matter the propaganda and no matter if the year is 1933 or 2023. Whether it be the Trail of Tears, Maafa, Ḥurban, Nakba or any other genocide; we cannot allow cognitive dissonance, our egos and our hunger for money, power, respect (Again, much love to Lil Kim and the Lox) to have us lose our humanity. And that is exactly what happens when we think we have the power to strip others of their beingness. Someone becomes an animal while the other person becomes a monster. I talked about this in a prior post that some of us (myself included) have engaged in the Dreaded Drama Triangle from a cultural standpoint. Once we are committed to who (and why) we label people victims, villains and heroes, we have a tendency to devalue them as we see fit. In truth, we are all human beings with the full capacity to do remarkable things. Conversely, we are all humans who have the capacity to cause great suffering.
I said what I said and I said it again. May we continue the work towards love, justice and liberation as we call for #ceasefirenow in Gaza and in every country on every continent; in every city all over the world.